Melbourne Cup Preview

Melbourne Cup Festival



The Melbourne Cup is commonly known as the race that stops a nation. It’s by far the biggest and most prestigious race run in Australia. It’s the richest two-mile handicap in the world and the race attracts all of the top owners and trainers from all over the world.

In this year’s race we have a short-priced favourite with Incentivise heading the market The Peter Moody trained horse won his last nine starts and the Group 1 Caulfield Cup last time out.

The big doubt for Incentivise is the distance of two-miles, which he has never run over before. I’m not sure I would want to be getting involved with a horse at that price when he has never raced/won over the distance in a hugely competitive race like this.

Andrew Balding has a very good chance of winning the Melbourne Cup as he has the second favourite in the race, Spanish Mission. He was last seen finishing second by a head to one of the best stayers’ we have ever seen in Stradivarius in the Lonsdale Cup at York. The trip and ground will be absolutely perfect for Spanish Mission, so he has a lot of things in his favour, but as we all know the Melbourne Cup is not an easy race to win, things have to fall right for you especially as he is likely to be held up.

There is no runner for Aidan O’Brien this year, but his son Joseph has sent one runner over from Ireland. He will run Twilight Payment who won the race last year and Jye McNeil keeps the ride. Last year he won the race off of 8st 10lbs, but this year he will have to carry 9st 2lbs which will make it a lot tougher for him. Last year he broke well from the gates and made all of the running and was even keeping on well at the line. I expect him to do the same again this year and is a safe each-way bet in what is a tough race.

Tralee Rose is another one who could play a part at the end of the race. She is only carrying 8st and has been running well over these staying trips. She has never won a race above Group 3 level so she has got to produce a personal best which I think she is capable of doing.

Pondus who used to be trained by Joseph O’Brien, is now based in Australia and trained by Robert Hickmott. He did not make the 2020 Melbourne Cup field, but he looks to have a decent each-way chance this year. The money has come for Pondus this week and with his light-weight I can see why.

  • 1st – Spanish Mission
  • 2nd – Pondus
  • 3rd – Tralee Rose
Dave has worked in the horse racing industry for over 7 years. He has worked with some of the biggest names in the racing world, including Sir AP McCoy, Sam Twiston-Davies, Emma Spencer, Aidan Coleman, and Nick Scholfield to name a few. Dave has worked at all the major racing festivals in the UK and Ireland, including Royal Ascot, the Cheltenham Festival and the Grand National.
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